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Ice Fishing Derby a Success

February 1, 2005

What do you get when you combine 300 rainbow trout, 133 kids, an ice-covered pond and gallons of hot chocolate? The 14th Annual Kid's Ice Fishing Derby, of course! Last Saturday's derby was a huge success attracting kids and their parents from Salmon and nearby communities. This year's turnout was one of the largest ever with just as many parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles and friends as the kids themselves. As Fish and Game Commissioner Gary Power said "You can visit with more people here than at Saveway!"

Each age category had many participants all trying to catch the biggest fish. And the fish cooperated nicely with most kids catching at least one fish and many other younger anglers hauling out their limit of 6. Katelyn Herbst was the winner of the 5 and under category with a nice trout weighing in at 0.85lbs. In the 6-8 year old category, Chase Bennett weighed in a 1.04lb fish that also ended up being the largest fish overall. Keeping it in the family was Chase's older brother J.J. Bennett who caught the largest fish for the 9-11 year old category, weighing 0.93lbs. Brandon Andrews took the prize in the 12-16 year old category with his 0.85lb trout. Each of these successful anglers received a $50 savings bond donated by the employees of the Salmon-Challis National Forest, Idaho Fish and Game, the BLM, NOAA Fisheries, the US. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Upper Salmon Basin Model Watershed Project.

This year's derby also featured a fish-cooking booth set up by Jim Juza of Idaho Fish and Game and Janna Brimmer of the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Young anglers who wanted to sample their catch could bring them to Jim and Janna for cooking. As the delicious aroma of frying fish filled the air, more and more kids stepped forward to have their fish cooked.

As the derby ended every child who participated received a prize during a drawing. Thanks to the generous donations of area merchants nearly $1000 in prizes were given to all registered anglers present and no one went home empty handed. The generosity of our merchants for this event is much appreciated and their continued support helps make this event such a big success. You can find a list of sponsoring merchants in this week's Recorder Herald. And if you have a chance, please let them know that you appreciate their support of events for our community's youngsters.

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